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Oskar Kokoschka’s The Dreaming Youths

Part 9: The Distant Island

The lonely figure of the girl reappears on an island, quietly contemplating a yellow rose. The nostalgic, naïve style, reminiscent of folk art, is reflected in the text, where simple verse forms look back to the traditional German ‘folk-poems’ which were undergoing a widespread revival during the early 1900s.

The unusual lettering, with words closely set without capitals or punctuation, was heavily influenced by the typographer Rudolf von Larisch (1856-1933) who was one of Kokoschka’s teachers at the School of Applied Arts.

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